Chrisley court case: Appeals court hears arguments to overturn convictions

A panel of federal appeals court judges in Atlanta heard arguments Friday morning in the attempt by reality television stars Todd and Julie Chrisley to overturn many of their convictions for bank fraud and tax evasion.

The former Atlanta multimillionaires are serving prison sentences of 12 and seven years, respectively, having been found guilty in 2022 of a total of 10 charges. Prosecutors said they fraudulently obtained $36 million in bank loans and hid millions of dollars in income from their “Chrisley Knows Best” show to avoid paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in outstanding federal taxes.

An attorney for the Chrisleys had 15 minutes to argue their case before three judges of the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. A prosecutor also had 15 minutes to state why the couple’s convictions and sentences should be upheld.

The judges were not expected to make a decision Friday. They typically issue an opinion months after oral argument, having also considered lengthy written arguments submitted by the parties as well as case records.

Where is the couple?

Todd Chrisley, 56, is incarcerated at a minimum security federal prison in Pensacola, Florida. Julie Chrisley, 51, is serving her sentence at a federal prison facility in Lexington, Kentucky.

Todd Chrisley, who was found guilty of eight charges, wants to be acquitted on two tax-related charges and granted a new trial on the remaining counts. He claims the jury heard false testimony and saw evidence from an illegal warehouse raid.

Julie Chrisley is asking for acquittal on five bank fraud charges and to be resentenced on five other counts. She’s fighting the $17.2 million restitution that both Chrisleys were ordered to pay and a related $17.2 million forfeiture ruling allowing prosecutors to take their property.

An attorney for Peter Tarantino, the couple’s former accountant, will also argue for his convictions to be overturned. Tarantino was prosecuted alongside the Chrisleys and wants a new trial, having been found guilty of three tax evasion-related charges, for which he was sentenced to three years in prison and fined $35,000.

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